02 November 2018


Week 43; 27 October 2018 - Pivot Fields

Frinally = Friday and Finally; for those who follow my posts you would have noticed that I went through a bit of a slump (actually that's an understatement) in terms of posting regularly. I paid for this in time and effort to catch-up the backlog of images to process, but since my Blog has been going from 2007, I had to keep it chronologically correct and in order. So, it was a labour of love to get back to now!

I spent an enjoyable morning again at the Pivot Fields especially with the weather cooling down. Most passerine migrants have now passed through, although there is still the odd stragglers who didn't get the Memo! As before, I checked the Pivots to see if any raptors had roosted overnight, but found only one Eastern Imperial Eagle

Eastern Imperial Eagle (Aquila heliaca)

There were many Black-eared and a single Black Kite at the farm and they were circling over the tractors that were harvesting the fields

Black-eared Kite (Milvus m. lineatus)

Here the Black Kite

Black Kite (Milvus migrans)

In the newly planted pivots, I had a small flock of Collared Pratincole

Collared Pratincole (Glareola pratincola)

And a hunting Common Kestrel (that seemed to have escaped, as it had some string around it's leg)

Common Kestrel (Falco tinnunculus)

In the same field a small flock of Greater Short-toed Larks (no Lesser today)

Greater Short-toed Lark (Calandrella brachydactyla)

Driving around the boundary, I had a Black-winged Kite (I think this is the same bird we have seen on a number of occasions)

Black-winged Kite (Elanus c. vociferus)

As well as the Pied Wheatear in the same place as it was seen last week

Pied Wheatear (Oenanthe pleschanka)

And a juvenile Red-backed Shrike

Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio)

On the overhead lines were Namaqua Doves

Male Namaqua Dove (Oena capensis)

And the small flock of Common Wood Pigeon

Common Wood Pigeon (Columba palumbus)

No Black-crowned Sparrow-Larks at all today in their usual spot, just a first year Northern Wheatear (which has a remarkable similarity to Isabelline! - thanks Yoav)

Northern Wheatear (Oenanthe oenanthe)

At the big pool, a male Eurasian Sparrowhawk came by overhead at speed

Eurasian Sparrowhawk (Accipiter nisus)

I checked one of the main field for the Lapwings and found the large flock of Northern Lapwing (spot the odd one out!)

Northern Lapwing (Vanellus vanellus)

And now 7 Sociable Lapwing (up from 3 two weeks back), which is really exciting news. They are really quite striking in flight

Sociable Lapwing (Vanellus gregarius)

I checked in between the maize crops

Maize crop

Only finding 'The Vestal' a small but striking moth - strange name though

The Vestal (Rhodometra sacraria)

I then spent some time in the marshy area with some reeds; this is good for both seed-eaters and warblers. Another Red-backed Shrike

Red-backed Shrike (Lanius collurio)

Along with many White Wagtails

White Wagtail (Motacilla alba)

A surprise Moustached Warbler that disappeared as quickly as it appeared

Moustached Warbler (Acrocephalus melanopogon)

There were now two Yellow-crowned Bishops actively feeding on the grass seeds

Yellow-crowned Bishop (Euplectes afer)

Driving back toward the gate, I thought I might have had another Indian Roller, but these were late European Rollers that looked quite tired

European Roller (Coracias garrulus)

A few weeks back I had seen an oiled Western White Stork with the bigger flock - seems it has returned with an un-oiled bird for company. Even though it is a soaring species, that additional weight will make it difficult to migrate - so it may overwinter at the farm.

Western White Stork (Ciconia ciconia)

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